Bayern wins nail-biter for 16th Euroleague victory
The Bayern Basketball team won a huge EuroLeague home game against Maccabi Tel Aviv with a passionate finish: Head coach Andrea Trinchieri's team decided the gripping nail-biter against the Israeli record champions (10-14) with a final score of 72-70 thanks to a 21-12 final quarter. It was already their 16th victory on the 26th gameday in the top division, which keeps them in fifth place. The FCBB were behind for long stretches and quite late back nine points. But again the FCBB put in an outstanding finish and nine seconds before the end Nick Weiler-Babb showed his nerves from the free throw line as he converted both free throws for the win. Maccabi's last shot by Scottie Wilbekin missed its target.
On Sunday (Feb. 28), the FCBB will host rival Wurzburg in the BBL for the southern derby, with the game starting at 15:00. In the EuroLeague, FC Bayern Basketball will then play Red Star Belgrade on Tuesday evening.
FC Bayern Basketball - Maccabi Tel Aviv 72:70 (37:38)
Wade Baldwin (16 Points/5 Rebounds/5 Assists), Jalen Reynolds (15), Paul Zipser (10), James Gist (8/5 Reb), Vladimir Lucic (6), D.J. Seeley (6), JaJuan Johnson (6), Nick Weiler-Babb (5/6 Reb), Zan Mark Sisko (5 Assists), Leon Radosevic, Diego Flaccadori und David Krämer
Ante Zizic (18 Points)
Christos Christodoulou, Mario Majkic, Tomasz Trawicki
Andrea Trinchieri: "From now on, every game will be like this. When you win, despite making dozens of mistakes, you have to be happy. It was a really hard game today, I want to congratulate my team. My respect also goes to Coach Sfairoloulos and the Maccabi team, together they showed a great defensive performance, so at times it looked like they dominated both sides of the court. But we are lucky to have a team that you have to go with, that you can't change - you have to go to war with them. We have little time to change things, but my team does not want to lose and at most in four of the 47 games now we have not tried to win. Moreover, sometimes we forget that there is also an opponent, in this case, one with experience and very good guards. Maccabi came here with their backs against the wall, this was almost their last chance to make the playoffs and they played a strong game. So I'm happy that we won the game, that we were patient enough to take the game where we wanted it. Today no Bayern player showed a bad performance, everyone contributed to the victory. And I really don't care how the game looks, at the moment I only care about the result. We fought and came back. We could have had it a bit easier, we blew two attacks at the end - but we managed to win, so congratulations to my players. I'm not going to waste time or energy worrying about rankings now. We will continue to work with the team and we do not want another team, I am very proud of this squad. (...) After two and a half months, I now have a deeper rotation and I can plan how I want to finish the game. Today I wanted to have the experience of James Gist on defense against some of the best guards in Europe. We trusted our defense and Wilbekin made an incredible bucket at the end with his weaker hand - but we held him to ten points, so we did a good job."
Paul Zipser: "The way we started, I thought it was going to be our day. But then we had a few weak phases, but then that's normal against a team like that. But we held Wilbekin to ten points, and with the rebounding we did a top job. It was a team effort today. We knew before the game that this was a very important one. And that's how we performed. Now we have to continue like that, every game is extremely hard now. There are still so many teams fighting for the playoffs and we are one of them. That's a spot we want to fight for and earn."
Wade Baldwin: "Maccabi has incredible guards and strong big men as well, but we overcame in the end and got key stops. James Gist held our team together and put in a strong performance with his mobility. This is a good win, but there is a lot more to do."Game recap:
Wade Baldwin, Nick Weiler-Babb, Vladimir Lucic, JaJuan Johnson and Leon Radosevic got the start against Israel's record champions. For Bayern, the start looked quite promising with four quick points, but the apparent rhythm completely disappeared and Tel Aviv pulled away with an 11-0 run (11-4/5th minute of play). The Munich team kept its composure and got back to within four (14-10/7th). Newcomer David Kramer made his debut for FCBB, which trailed 21-18 after the first quarter. Five turnovers in the first quarter were too many, but Jalen Reynolds impressed with nine points against his former team.
Munich equalized several times, but small mistakes prevented the lead (27-23/14th). The first goal from good friend Scottie Wilbekin prompted Coach Trinchieri to call a timeout (30-24/15th). Jalen Reynolds kept his team in the game first with the dunk and then with an assist on a Weiler-Babb three-pointer. Lucic provided the first lead in a long while with at 33-32 with two free throws, but this was soon lost again. However, the morale was high and Lucic went ahead in an exemplary manner and hustled after every ball. This attitude carried over to the team and they finished the first half down by one point 38-37.
The FCBB started the third quarter unfocused and Maccabi in the person of the dominant Wilbekin was clearly more focused. The FCBB found no answers and fell further behind forcing a Trinchieri time-out (48-39/25th). Reynolds delivered some firepower, which kept the deficit in single digits (50-45/27th). Zipser managed a very important goal from beyond the three-point line but a good rhythm still didn't come and they trailed 58-51 after quarter number three.
Bayern improved their defense and broke the game flow of the guests, who remained without a basket for several minutes - but a lead change was evasive. Wade Baldwin scored five points to again tie the game at 60-60 (35th) and a little later he scored to take the lead 64-62 (36th). A sensational block by Lucic put an exclamation mark and Baldwin took advantage and headed to the basket (68-64/38th). After a Wilbekin basket, Gist coolly sank a jump shot as the shot clock expired (70-66/87 seconds left). Maccabi scored quickly, and a Bayern carelessness helped the guests equalize at 70-70 with 18.7 seconds left on the clock. Weiler-Babb was fouled and hit both free throws (72-70/yet nine seconds). Wilbekin got a last-second shot off but his three-pointer missed the target.
TO THE SCHEDULE
Photo Credit: Eirich, Rauchensteiner, Gamel, Pahnke